The Big Red Bash has bowed to the inevitable and cancelled its three day July event in the Simpson Desert.
Event founder and organiser Greg Donovan said Friday the decision was made with a heavy heart.
"This decision is based on our utmost focus on ensuring the health and safety of everyone involved in the event from patrons, crew, volunteers, artists, vendors and local communities," Mr Donovan said.
"We know this won't be a surprise given the current COVID-19 situation. It's now very important that everyone stays home and stays safe."
The decision was made certain after Diamantina Shire shut down its borders for the winter season.
Mr Donovan said they held an internal meeting last week to discuss.
"Since then, we've been working around the clock to ensure the best possible outcome is achieved for you the patrons, who have supported the Big Red Bash from its inception in 2013," he said.
"We've contacted dozens of stakeholders including key event crew and contractors, land owners, artist managers, tourism bodies, sponsors, suppliers, local businesses and Oztix who look after our event ticketing. "
Mr Donovan said it took time to bring together before enabling a public announcement.
"In these uncertain times we wanted to provide some certainty and guarantee our patrons would have all their questions answered, along with a smooth and simple process to enable you to move forward with your personal plans for 2020 and 2021," he said.
"Whilst this is obviously very disappointing for those who were looking forward to this year's Bash, it needs to be put in perspective against Australia's fight against the COVID-19, and the wide ranging impacts it's having on everyone across Australia at this challenging time."
Mr Donovan said they were focusing on the planning needed to deliver the best ever Big Red Bash in 2021.
"All of our wonderful Australian artists remain committed to being part of the Big Red Bash next year for which we sincerely thank them," he said.
"We look forward to bringing people together from every corner of this great land, gathering under the desert skies to celebrate Australian music and mateship from the 6th to 8th July 2021."
All tickets to the 2020 Big Red Bash automatically become valid for the 2021 Big Red Bash, which will be held from July 6-8.
This year's tickets will be valid for 2021.
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